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13 Iconic All-American foods the country can take credit for inventing

In American we’re always reminded that we should be thankful to other cultures for their contributions to our cuisine. And we are! (Where would we be without pizza?) Our country is a melting pot, and we — along with our stomaches — are all better for it. But that doesn’t mean we can’t take credit for a handful of delicious foods created right here on US shores. Sure, well respected chefs have stretched their creative culinary chops for decades giving us fancy, classic dishes like Oysters Rockefeller or Lobster Newberg, but let’s celebrate some of the simpler pleasures that Americans have made and then shared with the world. Pecan Pie: Pecan pie is practically a food group in the Southern states. To claim anyone else came up with this classic would be a crime. Early New Orleans settlers from France are often credited with inventing the dish after they were introduced to the pecan but by…

Add flavor to your meals with flowers

Edible flowers are a fun way to add color to a cocktail or a meal — just be sure what you’re grabbing for in your garden won’t make you sick. Denise Schreiber, edible flower expert and author of Eat Your Roses… Pansies, Lavender and 49 Other Delicious Flowers, has been a flower-as-food fan for decades. On a trip to England’s Mottisfont Abbey in 1999, Schreiber discovered rose petal ice cream and her interest blossomed from there. “They had this little cup of of the ice cream, and once you put it in your mouth, it was the aroma of the rose on your tongue and in your mouth. It was fantastic,” said Schreiber. “When I came back to the States I started looking for recipes.” The edible flower trend has recently been on the rise, largely thanks to social media — but harvesting flowers as food is nothing new. Flowers have been included in the human diet as far…

Here’s how much water you should actually be drinking

Hydrating your body is the most important thing you can do when the weather heats up. Most people undervalue the importance water plays in their overall health. From clearing skin to alleviating headaches, helping with weight loss and aiding in digestion, just increasing your water consumption can save you money on a lot of other medical bills down the road. If your pee is light enough you can barely notice it in the bowl, you’re doing a good job. But if you’re leaving behind a bowl full of what could be described as Chernobyl yellow, you might want to make adjustments. So how much water is enough? Just like calorie intake, that answer depends on the individual. The old adage said you should drink 8 glasses of water every day, but experts are beginning to cater their advice more to the individual. The Mayo Clinic says men should drink about 13 cups (3 liters) of water…

Cool down with mint this summer

When days heat up, a dish prepared with light, crisp mint leaves will taste delicious. The cooling, sweet flavor of mint goes great with both sweet and savory dishes — try it with anything from omelettes to ice cream. While mint is easy to find at your local market this time of year, it’s simple enough that you should be growing it yourself. Seriously. It’s one of the easiest herbs to grow. It’s fragrant and fast-growing and requires a very minimal time commitment. Plant in a  container on your porch for easiest maintenance, since mint grown directly in the garden soil has a tendency to spread in weed-like fashion. When choosing your location, find a spot where the plant will receive morning sunlight and partial afternoon shade. Mint is pretty resilient, so the natural rain water might be all you need, depending on where you live. Just keep an eye on the pot’s soil. If it starts…

Summer Pool Floats for Food Lovers

Show off your love affair with your favorite foods both in and out of the water this summer. All food floats below are currently available on Amazon Prime, so you can have your sweet inflatable treat delivered within 2 days and get the party started! Huge Pink Donut What’s more fun than sprinkles? Giant Pretzel Room for three foodie friends! Watermelon Slice Raft Refreshingly cool looking. Giant Pizza Slice Buy 8 to make the whole pie! Giant Popcorn Much more fun that picking kernels out of your teeth. Ice Pop For a patriotic summer. GUMBALL MACHINE Taking it retro. Popsicle The ultimate summer food. Taco It’s always time for tacos. Ice Cream Sandwich Another summer staple both in and out of the pool. Bacon and Eggs No food list is complete without bacon — even an inflatable one. Pineapple I’m partial to…

Appetite-Inducing American Town Names: U.S. Cities Named After Foods

Hungry for travel? More than 80 percent of Americans are expected to take a road trip this summer, according to a survey conducted by the auto club AAA. Road trips have always been the perfect opportunity for a little quirky out-of-the-way adventure. World’s biggest rubber band ball? Don’t mind if I do! But what’s out there specifically for the foodie? Surely, we’ve visited towns for their unique cuisines — New Orleans, Maine, Texas — but what about towns named after cuisine? You don’t have to be a culinary expert to enjoy visiting these appetite-inducing American towns. Their quirky names make traveling to far-flung corners of the country an adventure for all eating enthusiasts. Enjoy these delicious destination. Breakfast fans might like to start their day in Two Egg, Florida, then head on up to Toast, North Carolina and Bacon, Washington. Hot Coffee, Mississippi is a can’t miss, but don’t forget the Cream, Wisconsin. Or maybe you’d like to…

Truly horrible vintage hot dog ads and recipes

For millions of Americans, summer means more hot dogs in their diet. And it seemingly always has. The hot dog, or frankfurter, was culturally imported from Germany, but was instantly popularized in the United States, where it became synonymous with the working-class. As a top-selling street food at hot dog stands and carts, the cased meat treat also became the food face of warm weather baseball games, amusement parks, and all things American culture. No one particular person is credited with inventing the steamed sausage roll we know today, but the earliest references of the word “hot dog” date to the late 19th century (1893) in the New Brunswick (New Jersey) Daily Times and the New York World. Anyone who has ever grown up knows there are unfortunate photos and experiences of our past we wish no one would ever see (Think: Hammer pants, frosted tips, or anything with glitter). The hot dog is no different.…

Planning your food for outdoor adventures

When you’re heading out on an adventure, with days planned full of activities, you want food that will nourish and revitalize you. Hiking, climbing, swimming, paddling, gathering fire wood, lugging equipment — you’re going to be burning more calories than you think. An adventurer should plan for about 1.5 to 2.5 pounds of food — about 2,500 to 4,500 calories — per person per day, depending on the individual and their exertion level. Even if you’re car camping, you’ll still likely be exerting yourself more than on a typical day. Extra food is essential for any overnight trip, but a common beginner mistake is to pack too much food, forcing you to haul extra weight everywhere you wander. Only experience will allow you to dial in your personal food requirements, but Bob Frye, outdoors editor for the Tribune-Review, everybodyadventures.com and lifelong outdoorsman, offers expert advice. Day Hike Even if your weekend adventure won’t include any overnights,…

Mother’s Day is busiest day at KFC

Mom has a secret love she’s never shared all of these years. Mother’s Day is a big day for dining out. More than half of Americans celebrating Mother’s Day plan a special brunch or dinner. According to the National Retail Federation, 55.9 percent of mothers celebrating will get taken out for a special meal. But when we can assume Mom has her pick of places, where does she choose to dine? KFC. According to YUM Brands, KFC sees its best day of business all year on Mother’s Day. And it’s not even close. Single stores report sales jumps of 50 percent on the annual holiday. KFC says it serves about 370,000 families each Mother’s Day. That translates to 6.5 million pieces — or 1.5 million pounds — of chicken and 815,000 servings of mashed potatoes and gravy. So celebrate your favorite matriarch this Sunday with a box of chocolates and a bucket of…